Made the annual pilgrimage to the 7th Wonkfest at the Dome in Tufnell Park. This is my third Wonkfest and you always approach with some trepidation as its basically a marathon rather than a sprint stretching as it does over 12 hours.
Last year I wrote about each band but this year a slightly different approach as I could’nt really be asked to go to that level of detail and I did review many of the same bands last year . But perhaps more importantly the event is really more about just the feel good factor of what’s going on and a celebration of the DIY music scene.
The format for those who have not been to Wonkfest is 22 bands with 20 minute sets spread across two stages. I missed the first few bands but it certainly seemed busier than last year in terms of attendees and as the day progressed it actually became difficult to get to the smaller of the two stages and punters started to congregate around the major stage and just hang out there. This meant people did miss out on some of the bands from last year who had been on the Dome stage but were now playing the smaller stage. Notable amongst some of these bands were “Murderburgers’ from Scotland, “Pizzatramp” from Wales and “Maid Of Ace “ from Southend (?).
It was also noticeable that more money had been spent on stage banners and other paraphernalia than previous years . The organisation was as ever slick and everything ran absolutely on time which is a slight irony for an anti-establishment event .
Other bands that I thought were really worth a mention were “Eastfield” who delivered some lyrically interesting , thought provoking three chord thrashing and I was particularly impressed by “Youth Killed it” who delivered a set with a good dollop of humour and like many of the bands did’nt take themselves too seriously. I always feel that the event is generally good humoured despite the hard core nature of the majority of the music and there is a level of humour throughout. On form “Aerial Salad”and “Dub Righters” also got the crowd rocking and skanking respectively .
The final band as always are the organisers “Wonk Unit”. Picking up on the humour theme they delivered the classics everyone wants such as “Kings Road Sporting Heroes” , “Je mapelle Alex” and “Go Easy”. With the normal level of banter you would expect from these guys there was a moment half way through the set that epitomised the day. Vocalist Alex asked the audience to seperate down the middle ,create a gap and get ready for a huge thrash as the next song started . The last instruction before the song struck up was that for the gentler folk at the back perhaps they could walk toward each other slowly and for the rest of the crowd “please thrash responsibility”.
It was a great event as usual. Looking forward to next year.